I am in the process of building myself a better wardrobe.
By carefully considering the pieces that I loved the most, I was able to come up with a personal checklist that makes it easier for me to choose which pieces I woud keep, sew, or purchase in the future.
Over the past couple of months, I have been ruthlessly overhauling my wardrobe. Any clothes, shoes, accessories, fabrics, or patterns that don’t follow my personal checklist no longer have a place in my life.
My Personal WardrobeChecklist
Flexible, Versatile & Practical – can be worn in different settings or seasons.
Fashionable – Classic pieces with a modern and/or bold twist
Custom fit to my body, my lifestyle & my unique personality
Flattering to my body shape
Effortless and Easy – Reaching into my closet and always pulling out a winner.
A perfect example of an outfit that encompasses each of these elements is today’s feature outfit.
I love this classic self made half circle midi skirt.I designed especially for my bodyshape. I opted to add facings instead of a waistband because it visually lengthens my short torso.
My fabric choice adds the dramatic and modern touch that I love.
This skirt is so versatile. It’s midi length is wearable in just about any setting. It can easily and effortlessly go from day to night just by changing out the top, shoes and accessories.
Here I’ve paired it with a flirty pair of heeled sandals and a black off the shoulder bodysuit (which is actually a swimsuit that I purchased from Amazon), perfect for date night.
Pattern Description: Made for you. Petite- able 1 hour Aline shift dress.
Pattern Sizing: I made view c in a size 14 , D Cup. I’m a solid girl with a medium sized frame. It fit me great.
Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? Yes ..but I think this dress looks better sewn up than it does in the illustration.
What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern? I loved that there are only 4 pieces and that I had the option to pick my cup size. These factors make this pattern a winner for me.
Fabric Used: African Wax Print that I purchased from Ghana.
Pattern alterations or any design changes you made: My usual short waist adjustment.
Would you sew it again? This pattern is one that I intend to use again and again. It fits great. The style works well with my body shape. The style is simple and can easily be altered for different looks.
Would you recommend it to others? I highly recommend this pattern if you like this style of dress.
It seems like its been ages since I last posted. My life has been crazy busy. Since I last posted, I’ve gone back to work outside the home full-time. I’ve been too busy to post here but not too busy to sew.
I hope to eventually post all of the projects that I haven’t had a chance to put on the blog but for now, I will post my latest project.
June is Scleroderma awareness month and Teal is the color that represents this cause. This cause is close to my heart because, my mother had this disease. It was my goal to sew at least 4 pieces featuring the color Teal.
This is outfit #2. I chose this dark Teal Rayon fabric because I loved the weight and touch of the fabric. It is really soft and drapes beautifully.
Pattern Description: Off the Shoulder Dress or Top
Pattern Sizing: I sewed a medium (12/14)
Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? yes
What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?I loved that it only has 4 main pieces. I love the simple style.
Fabric Used: Rayon Poly with stretch
Pattern alterations or any design changes you made – I did my usual adjustment for my short waist. I serged my hemline to preserve length. I didn’t have enough fabric to add lengthen it. I serged the flounces to match the skirt hemline.
Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it? I don’t think that I need another off the shoulder dress but I would highly recommend this pattern if you are looking to make something quick , easy, and super cute.
Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?close enough
Were the instructions easy to follow?It seemed as if there was a missing step when adding the lining but I figured it out. My 3a extension was also misprinted. I had to flip that piece to make it work with the piece that it was being joined to.
What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?I loved that it only has 4 main pieces. I love the simple style. It was extremely comfortable to wear.
Fabric Used: poly crepe
Pattern alterations or any design changes you made – All alterations made were vertical. To accomodate my short waist I removed 1 inch above the waist, For comfort and a better fit through the rise I added 1.5 inches between the waist and crotch. Because I prefer my wide leg pants to cover my shoes I added 2 inches to the legs of the pants.
Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it : I won’t be making it again but I do recommend it.
Conclusion: I made this to wear to a white party. It was perfect for the occasion. White proved to very hard to photogragh outside…I think it looked much better in person.
This is easily the most simple piece I’ve ever made and I love it. It has so many styling possibilities. I can easily see myself wearing this out for a date night with my husband or dressing it up for a special occasion.
This would be a great beginner project for someone that is just learning to sew. I am not new to sewing in general but I am new to sewing stretchy fabrics.
To sew a skirt like this you don’t really even need to buy a pattern. You can make your own by tracing a well fitted pencil skirt. I actually traced the skirt of my favorite lbd and free handed the tail part of the skirt.
Are you interested in making your own? Check out this tutorial. This is the one that I followed. Instead of cutting around my skirt directly on the fabric, I traced my pattern onto a large piece of paper and added an inch seam allowance. I also made mine high waisted with two inch elastic at the waist.
Because I was wearing the skirt to a wedding, I paired it with a cute fitted black tee shirt with lace details at the shoulders
*Silver- toned blingy statement necklace with Baby Pink jewels (hard to see in the picture)
*Simple faux diamond princess cut studs
*Baby Pink framed shades
I’ve always loved watching Style Makeover shows like “What Not to Wear”, “Ambush Makeover”, and “Love Lust or Run”. I’ve always secretly wished that I could get a makeover one day. So I decided to take matters into my own hands and make myself over.
Below I have listed 6 easy ways that I have been transforming my style while working with a limited budget. Many of the tips listed below do require a small investment of time and/or money but will yield a high return when it comes to transforming your style.
1. Change Your Hair
“If Your Hair is Done Properly and You Are Wearing Good Shoes, You Can Get Away With Anything” Iris Apfel
A great hairstyle can make you look and feel good in any and everything that you wear. More importantly, your hairstyle says something about who you are as a person, just like the clothes you wear.
Changing up your hair color, hair texture, and hair length can easily be done by the hands of a capable professional hairstylist OR by throwing on a hair piece.
While You Tube Videos, Blog tutorials, and Pinterest are also options for any who would prefer to take the DIY route …. I personally prefer to leave my hair cuts and major hair color changes to the professionals.
2. Have A Professional Beauty Consultation
Makeup and hair go hand in hand. With the proper hairstyle, all eyes will be on your face so use a little color to highlight your best features.
I’ve had to opportunity to be made over by a professional MUA (Make Up Artist). Having a face to face session was invaluable because she was able to give me advice tailored to my specific needs.
I highly recommend setting up at least one face to face session with a make up professional, so that you can get color recommendations;thereafter, you can get a lot of great tips and tutorials on You Tube and from books, blogs, and magazines. Even a friend or family member who is good with makeup might be a great resource.
*Below is a picture to show the difference that a good haircut and a little makeup can make.
3. Invest In Accessories
I LOVE accessories! They are an easy way to turn a basic outfit into something really special. Head wraps, Big hoops, Statement necklaces, Statement shoes, and Sunglasses are definitely a few of my favorite accessories of the moment.
Because I am still building my wardrobe and I don’t have that many pieces, I rely very heavily on my accessories to keep my basics fresh and interesting.
When it comes to accessorizing I am definitely not an expert. But I have learned some very good guidelines from a book that I purchased from Amazon a few years back: The Finishing Touch – Perfecting the Art of Accessorizing, by Imogen Lamport.
For the most part, I let my gut have the final say when it comes down to which accessories I choose to wear with my outfit. If I love it and it feels right I go with it.
4. Learn and Dress For Your Body Shape
Knowing your body shape is so important because it will help you to recognize what styles will and won’t work for your body. Thankfully there is no shortage of advice on the subject. A host of information can be readily found in Books, on Blogs, Forums, and Pinterest.
What worked for me. For me figuring out my body shape was a real challenge until I discovered YouLookFab.com. On that website, I found a forum where I was able to upload a picture of myself and receive objective feedback about my body shape. With the help of the awesome ladies on this site, I discovered that I am a short waisted Racy Rectangle.
Once you have your body shape sorted out, you can easily learn how best to dress it here.
5. Identify Your Style
Identifying your style can also be a real challenge. There are also many online and written quizzes that are designed to help you to figure this out, but these never really helped me.
What worked for me. I read this blog entry and this blog entry over at GirlAboutDowntown.com. After reading these posts, I discovered that finding my personal style was really a very simple process. All I had to do was to write down 3 words to describe how I wanted others to see me when they looked at me and choose my pieces accordingly. OMG so simple! Those 3 words along with my body shape are the filters that I use when deciding on what pieces I will keep, buy, or sew.
6.Take Inventory Of Your Current and Future Wardrobe Pieces
After you have Identified your body shape and personal style you will know what pieces will fit best into your wardrobe. Ultimately the only items that you want to have in your closet or plan to purchase should:
flatter your body shape
fit you properly
feel good on
pass through your 3 word filter
fit your lifestyle
Now I’m not suggesting that you get rid of everything in your closet. For most people, this will be a process. Some of your current pieces can be re-worked to fit until you can find a suitable replacement. We will explore some strategies for re-working these pieces in future posts.
This Dress has become a fast favorite.I find myself reaching for it often because It’s so easy to wear and syle.
I decided that I wanted to channel Olivia Newton John’s Sandy (post makeover) character from Grease but in a fun way. I added instant cool with my favorite black moto and pair of silver framed aviators.
For fun I added a pop of blue with my belt and shoes.